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Summer Music Festivals in the U.S.

By Jennifer M. Wood - 2013-07-02T16:42:05Z

Photograph by Mark Davis

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Essence Festival

New Orleans, Louisiana

Dates: July 4–7

Lineup: Beyoncé, Maxwell, New Edition, Charlie Wilson, Keyshia Cole, Daley, LL Cool J, Trey Songz, Emeli Sandé, Jill Scott, Leela James, Faith Evans, Solange, St.Beauty, Avery*Sunshine, PJ Morton, TGT, Alice Smith, Deep Cotton, F. Stokes, Big Daddy Kane, Les Nubians, Biz Markie

The biggest names in R&B and hip-hop—including Queen Bey herself—will take over New Orleans’ Superdome this Fourth of July for four days of power vocals and personal empowerment. Founded in 1995, the Essence Festival has dropped the “Music” from its name for the first time this year to better illustrate the full scope of its events, including a daily lineup of big-name speakers; Reverend Al Sharpton, Newark Mayor Cory Booker, and Emmy-winning life coach Iyanla Vanzant are just a few of the 50-plus names on the docket.

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